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A Potter's Moll: Pink And Sparkly

...One of my weaknesses is for shoes – cheap and cheerful mostly, which is my general guide to what I wear. Last weekend a friend’s granddaughter declared that she needed to show her new (pink, sparkly) trainers to Lizzie Robison. A girl after my own heart. As a child, whenever I got new shoes, which was not that often, I used to put them on the bedside table so that they would be the first things I saw next day...

Liz Robison writes of sparkly shoes, Tumbling Tom tomatoes and other pleasures.

To read more of Liz's columns please click on http://www.openwriting.com/cgi-bin/mt-search.cgi?IncludeBlogs=1&search=Liz+Robison

And do please visit the Web site of Liz's husband, potter Jim Robison http://www.jimrobison.co.uk/

We have a strange interweaving of work and leisure here. This Bank Holiday will see Jim, the potter and me delivering work to galleries in Birmingham and Worcester and ending up in the Cotswolds to stay the night with my brother and his wife, always a convivial occasion.

Next weekend we will be camping in our caravan at Belvoir Castle, near Nottingham, and tending our stall at the 3-day ceramic and food event there. It’s a curiosity of English that some French words have been anglicised in their pronunciation, so Belvoir is now pronounced Beever. The Americans have done it with Notre Dame, which they pronounce Noder Dayme and Saline, Michigan, where I lived briefly is pronounced Saleen. Mind you, what about the process the other way: Peking/Beijing, Bombay/Mumbai, Calcutta/Kolcotta. Interesting.

Talking of convivial occasions above, makes me recall a very pleasant one recently where six of us sat outside enjoying drinks on a friend’s patio till 8 pm, the first time it has been warm enough to do so this year. I hope the long hot summer we are promised does materialise.

Although I am a keen and fairly knowledgeable gardener, I still get defeated by events sometimes. Some plants I sent for languished for a week in the Post Office while we were on holiday; some Tumbling Tom tomatoes which promised me hundreds of fruits cascading down from a hanging basket came to an abrupt halt when the temperature fell overnight. OK, now I know that below 5 degrees is considered frosty, and also that everyone else apparently knows that you do not put them out till June.

Watching gardening programmes on TV and reading gardening books make me realise that there are certain words the experts use that do just not happen in my garden in West Yorkshire though they may do down south: plant a climber and let it scramble over a tree stump, plant X and you will soon have drifts of flowers. Ah well, I try, and I do enjoy it, and most things look pretty good at the moment.

One of my weaknesses is for shoes – cheap and cheerful mostly, which is my general guide to what I wear. Last weekend a friend’s granddaughter declared that she needed to show her new (pink, sparkly) trainers to Lizzie Robison. A girl after my own heart. As a child, whenever I got new shoes, which was not that often, I used to put them on the bedside table so that they would be the first things I saw next day.

I happened upon a sitcom on BBC 4 recently called Early Doors, set in a working class pub in Greater Manchester. Scripted by Craig Cash of Royle Family fame, the regulars chat and wind each other up.

One guy announces: The wife wants us to have a dinner party.

Character B says: What’s one of them?

Bloke A replies: You have people come to your house to have their dinner.

Character B comes back with: Have you got enough trays?

Priceless!

The cartoonist Steve Bell has been having a field day over the MP’s expenses scandal. ‘Order, order’ and ‘Ordure, ordure’ are too close to resist. And a little piggy Hazel Blears declares from a trough: ‘No more free swill….From now on…. Pay as you wallow.’

More from me in a fortnight.

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